Building Bridges and Opportunities on the Job


January 19, 2024

Olsson’s Tejal Desai enjoys trying new things. It’s helped her find her niche in engineering – and excel in it.  

She has a background in structural engineering and specializes in transportation as an Olsson project engineer. 

Tejal’s day is filled with bridge designs, math (the subject that inspired her to pursue engineering), and visits to project sites.  

“You can try out different things and find your niche and excel in it,” she said. “For me, I love to work with anything with bridges. I love to design them. I love to inspect them.” 

Tejal looks for opportunities to share her passion with aspiring engineers. At a recent site visit, she invited an intern to experience a bridge inspection for the first time. 

Tejal remembers being given similar opportunities and how much she learned. 

“I’ve been thrown into opportunities,” she said. “If you are a student, get as much hands-on experience as you can. Practical knowledge is very, very valuable. You will learn a few things from the book, but the majority of stuff you learn on the job.” 

Note: Tejal received a promotion since the above video interview and is now a project engineer.